Autumn is the perfect time to visit the mountains, so leave the stress of everyday life behind and slip away to the beautiful North Georgia mountains for a Forest Therapy Retreat led by Pat Homer, certified forest therapy guide and owner of Southeastern Nature & Forest Therapy Consulting. Pat is certified by the Association of Nature & Forest Therapy Guides and Services, located in Santa Rosa, California.
Forest Therapy, also known as shinrin-yoku or "forest-bathing," originated in Japan and has been adapted to western culture. Now available in the U.S., this practice is rapidly increasing in popularity and has been featured in many major news outlets lately because of the many health benefits it offers. Spending mindful time in the forest has been scientifically proven to lower stress hormones and to decrease blood pressure and anxiety while it bolsters our immune system by increasing our Natural Killer cells. NK cells mop up invaders, such as viruses, bacteria, and cancer cells and help us to fight off infections and other diseases. During this retreat, you will learn methods of deep nature connection that you can take home to use in your own backyard or other natural area to continue enjoying the health-giving benefits of nature.
The weekend begins on Friday with a very casual dinner with healthy and delicious dining at the Pure Vida restaurant, located onsite, followed by an equally casual introductory gathering with your choice of a glass of wine or sparkling water. This weekend is about relaxing, so no fancy clothes, heels or ties are needed.
Saturday begins with breakfast, followed by a guided forest therapy walk, which is a slowly paced walk interspersed with easy and fun “invitations,” or activities, to help you deepen your connection to nature. After a leisurely lunch, enjoy nature journaling and a haiku workshop led by Pat and her husband Ken, an award-winning, published poet. Afterward, enjoy a little free time to rock on the front porch and enjoy the mountain vistas, relax in the hot tub, or indulge in a *massage, spa treatment, or other activity offered by the resort. After dinner, the group will gather at the fire pit for a bonfire and conversation, story-telling, or a sing-along. If you play an instrument, please feel free to bring it.
Sunday begins with breakfast, followed by another wonderfully relaxing guided forest therapy walk on quiet trails beside a natural spring. The retreat ends with lunch after which participants may return home, or visit downtown Dahlonega.
Call (706) 865-7678 for reservations or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For additional questions e-mail: email@example.com or (912) 499-0737
Participants who cancel thirty-one (31) or more days before the retreat will receive a full refund. Participants will forfeit their 50% deposit should they cancel thirty (30) to eight (8) days before the retreat start date. Participants will forfeit 100% of the retreat payment should they cancel within seven (7) days of the retreat start date.
About your guide:
Pat Homer has been a nature enthusiast since her early days of toddling behind her grandmother in her garden and in the woods on their farm. Having spent so much time outdoors, Pat has always known intuitively the importance of a deep nature connection. So, when she heard about forest therapy guide training and the research that supports it, she was intrigued and decided to go through the certification process to see what it was all about. She says that while she thought she knew about nature connection before, her nature experiences are now richer and more fulfilling because of her training. Now that she has finished the certification process, she hopes to share it with as many people as possible. She and her husband Ken teach English at East Georgia State College. They live in Statesboro with their two rescue dogs, Beau and Belle.
*Spa treatments, massages, yoga sessions, and other activities offered by Dahlonega Spa Resort require advanced reservations and are not covered in the retreat price.